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What to do on Canada Day in Montréal

Sure, Montréal has oodles of European charm, but in its heart of hearts, it really is Canadian. On July 1, tourists and locals will come together to celebrate Canada Day with an array of events to choose from across the city. Between the official ceremonies, a multicultural parade, star-studded musical performances, evening parties and a fireworks display, you’ll have plenty of fun to choose from as you immerse yourself in all things Canadian. Celebrate with the family “From east to west… Happy Canada Day” is the theme of this year’s celebration and people will have plenty of fun and free activities to enjoy in the Old Port and the Bonsecours Basin Park. Fun guaranteed! The celebrations start with pomp and circumstance at 11 a.m., with an official ceremony that includes the swearing in of new Canadians, the raising of the flag and the Canadian Armed Forces Military Band playing. At noon, there will be a 21-cannon salute and, for people with a sweet tooth, the chance to have a piece of giant birthday cake. Come afternoon, there will be a host of activities to choose from. In the Canada Tent, history buffs can take a history tour of the Canadian… / Read More →

Things to do in Montréal: June 24 to 30

The city heats up with a bang at the massive Saint-Jean-Baptiste Day celebrations this Friday and Saturday, keeps sizzling with great food and drink at outdoor markets everywhere, and stays hot as the Montréal International Jazz Festival opens on Thursday. Outdoor celebrations The whole city celebrates Saint-Jean-Baptiste Day, also known as Fête National, on June 24 – and on June 23 too! Find live music, food and general festivities at Place des Festivals, Jardins Gamelin and along St-Denis Street in the Quartier des Spectacles, at the Olympic Park and in every neighbourhood including at the Marché des Possibles in Mile End – plus the annual parade along Sainte-Catherine Street downtown starting at 1 pm on June 24. In the Old Port of Montréal, ride the zipline, climb on the rope structures of Voiles en Voiles, and find your way through the SOS Labyrinthe. At the foot of the Jacques-Cartier bridge you’ll find Marché du Village au Pied-du-Courant, featuring free music events, an outdoor bar, food trucks and more all summer. The Botanical Garden continues its outdoor arts series with live music on the weekend, this Sunday with Ingrid St-Pierre. When night falls in Old Montréal, the building’s facades light up with the 20… / Read More →

Things to do in Montréal: June 10 to 16

Fast cars, fun parties, great music, excellent food: it’s June in Montréal, that’s for sure. Music festivals dominate the entertainment field this week, from French pop to classical Baroque, loudly rivalled by F1 Grand Prix events plus a beer festival, a science fest, a celebration of street art, and more. Start your engines Fast, flashy and over the top, the annual Formula 1 Grand Prix du Canada returns this weekend with a race at Circuit Gilles-Villeneuve near Parc Jean-Drapeau, plus meet-ups with star drivers, outdoor entertainment and too many parties to count in downtown Montréal. The biggest parties happen outdoors: at the Crescent Street Canadian Grand Prix Festival, the Peel Formula event a couple of blocks over, F1 Old Montréal activities and  Little Italy Racing Weekend celebrations, late-night electro dance parties at New City Gas  and more – cars, drivers, beautiful people, music, food and drink, what else could an F1 fan ask for? Outdoor entertainment for all ages All those outdoor stages at Place des Festivals downtown light up with new and legendary music stars from Québec, France, Belgium, Mali and other French-speaking countries for the Les FrancoFolies festival, ongoing to June 18 – plus there’s food and drink,… / Read More →

Must-see autumn 2015 Montréal museum exhibitions

There are several hot-ticket exhibitions on display at Montréal museums this autumn. Here are some choice picks: The George S. Zimbel: A Humanist Photographer exhibition at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts has plenty of star power: The exhibition features seventy images from Zimbel’s collection and covers three years of his career: 1953, 1954 and 1955. The result of photographic commissions for magazines and personal projects, some of these photos have become iconic, such as his series on Marilyn Monroe shot in 1954 during the production of the film The Seven Year Itch by director Billy Wilder. With a camera in his hand since his teenage years, Zimbel’s New York street scenes reflect the social and economic climate of postwar America. “1953, ’54, ’55 — those were tense years,” says Zimbel, who has lived and worked in Montréal since the early 1980s. “I was in the U.S. Army in Germany working on the Rhine River, but on leave I was seeing Europe for the first time. Then back to New York to freelance for magazines, industry, any assignment, anywhere — New York, Philadelphia, New Orleans, Texas — I was on my own, shooting all the time, had to make a… / Read More →

Deals and steals at Montréal museums

Montréal Museums’ Day is a great way for art-lovers on a budget to visit Montréal’s 38 museums for free in late May each year. But the city’s major museums also have many deals year-round to see blockbuster exhibits as well as their permanent collections. Here are some choice activities and deals for solo visitors as well as families on a budget: Family deals The oldest and busiest museum in Canada, the Montréal Museum of Fine Arts schedules Family Weekends with children’s drop-in workshops and interactive tours of the collections, as well as lectures and film screenings in the Maxwell Cummings Auditorium. MMFA admission for children 12 and under is free, although fees do apply for the MMFA’s popular Museum Day Camps for children. The Musée d’art contemporain admission for children aged 12 and under is free, although fees do apply for the MAC’s popular Museum Day Camps for children.  The MAC also charges a flat-rate $30 admission for families (2 adults with children). The McCord Museum admission and activities are free for children aged 12 and under. On arrival at the McCord’s admissions desk, kids will get a free backpack (as long as quantities last) containing everything they’ll need for… / Read More →

10 Things that Make Montréal Shine

We’ve been telling you for years: Montréal is an amazing place to visit. With world-class dining, accommodations, festivals, museums and heritage sites, enhanced with four distinct seasons and sexy French charm, our city consistently ranks among the world’s best. Naming all our successes could take a while, so we’ve narrowed down the list to a cool round-up of 10 media nominations that rank Montréal among the world’s hottest travel destinations. Since we’ve come out on top in such a diverse range of categories—including some that will surprise you (check out #7!)—we know that Montréal offers something for everyone. See which features will tickle your fancy, then go ahead and book your ticket. Here are just 10 things that put Montréal in the limelight: 1.  Best Winter Destinations National Geographic, December 2014 “Montréal is at its most magical blanketed in snow. Bundle up, get outside, and celebrate winter at the 16th MONTRÉAL EN LUMIÈRE, the city’s biggest winter arts, music, and food festival. Save some energy for the final night’s Nuit Blanche à Montréal, a dusk-to-dawn party packed with more than 200 indoor and outdoor activities. Most events are free, and some are held under the stars or, if you’re lucky, the lightly falling snow.” 2. Best Music… / Read More →

A guide to Montréal’s must-see neighbourhoods: Part 1

Every enclave of Montréal has its glittering highlights and its open secrets – in Part 1 of our guide, we look at Old Montréal, Griffintown, Little Burgundy, Saint-Henri and Verdun – from restaurants to historical sites, shopping to outdoor adventure, each of the city’s neighbourhoods has something unique to offer. Old Montréal Vieux-Montréal represents the city’s historical heart, yet boasts plenty of modern flare, especially among its boutique hotels and creative eateries. Tread the cobblestone streets past centuries-old architecture to visit museums, cathedrals and art galleries, walk along the Port of Montréal on the St. Lawrence River, dine at heavenly restaurants and charming cafes, relax at a bar or a luxurious spa, go shopping for high-fashion by local and international designers, or wonderfully kitschy souvenirs, take a horse-drawn carriage ride, and see live music and more on the bustling streets. Griffintown In the past few years, some of the city’s hottest restaurants, bars and art galleries have popped up in Griffintown, just south of downtown, joining antique shops and historical sites to heighten the profile of the growing neighbourhood. On the foodie front, breweries and cafés rub shoulders with fine dining and cocktail lounges. One of the city’s larger commercial gallery spaces,… / Read More →

Things to Do in Montreal: April 12-18

With winter on the outs, Montreal is picking up the pace (though we didn’t slow down too much) with spring-themed restaurant menus, a huge fashion sale, sporting events, comedy stylings, theatre, dance, interactive art and an extreme number of live music shows…

Expert Tips for a Family-Friendly Trip to Montreal

As everyone knows, Montreal is a family-friendly destination. There are many activities for kids of all ages in our science centre, our Planetarium, our Insectarium, our Botanical Gardens, and our Biodome. These are all great places to bring the young ones for some excitement  – and you can be sure that they’ll be all tired out after their action-packed days out on on the town (just don’t tell them all this fun is educational, too!

THE BEATLES INVADE MONTREAL, AGAIN

Pop music, shaggy haircuts, screaming fans – all are iconically associated with The Beatles and all show up in a spangly new exhibition at Pointe-à-Callière, the Montréal Museum of Archaeology and History..